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Show you care

Show you care

Commoning is essential to the health and diversity of the New Forest. The grazing animals physically shape the lawns and heathland of the Forest into the National Park’s famous landscape. The ancient tradition of commoning is at the heart of the working Forest’s close-knit communities.

If you live, work or visit the New Forest you can show you care about commoning by:

  1. Please don’t feed or pet the animals; there is plenty of natural food and it’s best that they don’t come to rely on people’s attention. They may look friendly but they can bite and kick, especially mares with foals
  2. The ponies and other animals have no road sense and frequently stand or walk on the unfenced roads, so give them a wide berth and be especially careful when driving at night
  3. Your food and litter could harm the ponies and donkeys. Please take your litter home if bins are full
  4. Steering clear of drifts, where animals are rounded up for checks
  5. Keep dogs under control and do not let them agitate commoners’ animals
  6. Display an ‘I go slow for ponies’ sticker in your vehicle, available from our offices at Lymington Town Hall.
  7. Sign up to the Shared Forest scheme for businesses who want their staff to be more aware of the animals when driving.

National Park Member


'Please don’t feed or pet the animals; they may look friendly but they can bite and kick.'

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